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How many years of college and experience is there needed to become a computerprogrammer?

I want to learn about this

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Subject: Career question for you

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Furman’s Answer

Hey Cam! So you actually do not need a degree to get into computer programming. Most careers in computer programming only requires that you have experience with the program needed for the job at hand. Certifications can sometimes be needed but not always with programming. You can learn programming easily through a website/app called Udemy. Some courses may be free and some may cost. You can also always use YouTube to learn programming for free and then start creating your own projects so that you will gain the experience needed prior to going into the field and so that you will have projects to show off to the hiring manager. I can say that if you get your degree, that will help in the long run as a good foundation. Certifications are a plus and can help you branch out into more than just computer programming or into specific levels/higher positions within computer programming . Many popular coding programs are Java, Python, HTML5 and many more. Whatever you decide, you got this!
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Caryn’s Answer

Rebecca and Amit have given spot-on and comprehensive responses. I'd like to supplement their insights by highlighting that the conventional career preparation pathway isn't the only route to becoming a computer programmer. With a simple programming certificate from a technical school, you can specialize in your desired programming language(s) and secure entry-level programming roles. While this pathway may not offer a broad-based education that could expedite your career progression, it's a viable option nonetheless. Courses in English, Writing, Negotiations, and Cultural Awareness/Social Studies can bolster your communication skills in the workplace, potentially accelerating your career advancement.

If you're open to further learning, consider my personal journey. I hold two bachelor's degrees - one in Applied Mathematics/Computer Science, which provided a solid theoretical foundation and ample programming experience, and another in Business. I managed to earn both within four years, taking five courses per semester (as opposed to the usual four) and dedicating one summer to study. While it was challenging, this approach was financially viable for me as my university charged per semester, not per course. These dual degrees opened doors to opportunities beyond programming, such as consulting, business analysis, and process work.

However, the most valuable piece of advice comes from Rebecca - start working towards your success today.
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Jake’s Answer

The easiest way is to get a four-year degree in computer science. While, as other have mentioned, some people don't have this background, it will be an uphill battle breaking into the field without formal education, but it can be done.
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Mayuri’s Answer

Hi Cam. I was in the same shoes as yours when i started my studies in the university and I would like to answer as per my experience which might vary from others. Becoming a computer programmer typically requires a combination of education and practical experience. The specific requirements can vary depending on the employer and the nature of the programming work. Some entry-level programming positions may be accessible with an associate's degree in computer science or a related field. This degree usually takes around 2 years to complete. Many employers prefer candidates with a bachelor's degree in computer science, software engineering, or a related field. A bachelor's degree typically takes 4 years to complete. In addition to formal education, programmers need to develop strong programming skills in languages such as Python, Java, C++, or others depending on the industry. I would say that having knowledge of algorithms, data structures, and problem-solving is crucial and being familiar with development tools, version control systems, and software development methodologies is important and are also available for free.Knowing just multiple languages isn't enough, the main thing one should focus on is to build logic and can express by the means of programming.You can try doing self study or for more guided approach can enroll in bootcamps or courses in udemy or coursera which guides with the roadmap to follow. To be frank I have come across people who got a job in IT without having relevant degrees as well but for sure they enrolled in bootcamps or did many projects which courses can guide you through.Practical experience gained through internships, co-op programs, or personal projects can greatly enhance your employability. These experiences allow you to apply theoretical knowledge in real-world scenarios.
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Amit’s Answer

Becoming a computer programmer typically requires a bachelor’s degree, which usually takes about four years to complete if you attend school full-time. However, some professionals can start working with an associate degree, which takes about two years.

It’s important to note that the time it takes to become a computer programmer can vary depending on the individual’s pace of learning and the specific educational path they choose. For instance, if you pursue your degree part-time, it might take anywhere from five to six years. On the other hand, if you pursue an accelerated online program, you might be able to complete your degree in under three years.

In addition to formal education, gaining practical experience through internships or entry-level positions can be beneficial. This hands-on experience can help you understand the real-world applications of your studies and make you more attractive to potential employers.

Remember, the field of computer programming is constantly evolving, so continuous learning and skill development are crucial even after you’ve entered the profession. Hope this helps! 😊
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Brenda’s Answer

You don't have to have a bachelor's degree although if you plan to move into management, they may want to see this or a higher degree. With that said, you can simply work on getting certifications in the areas that you are interested in and go right to work making some top-dollar money as if you had a bachelor's without a certification. There is a difference between a certificate and CERTIFICATION. You want to do the latter. Certification is when you pay and sit for an exam that will prove that you know all there is to know about the industry regarding that subject. You can always take courses on Coursera (owned by Google) get the certificates and then sit for the certification. Study subjects like Python, Tableau (data analysis), R, and SAS. These are hot and will yield big money without the degree. I have a student who listened to me and learned Python, Excel, and Tableau and sat for the certifications. He was able to get a job with Lockheed Martin starting at $40 per hour. You won't hear many people tell you this because they want everyone to go to college. I have been working in higher education for 14 years and I can see firsthand how it puts so many students in debt like they have a mortgage payment. It's not for everyone. Get into a career and make the money and then let the company pay for a degree if that is what you want. You may need to get an associate's degree or a technical degree or diploma, but get the certificates through Coursera and move forward NOW. I believe Coursera offers a plan at about $60 a month to study as many programs and software as you want. Other plans are less for choosing one particular program to study, but the one I mentioned lets you study as many as you want. Best wishes to you. I know you will do great. Believe in yourself.
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Rebecca’s Answer

Thank you for your question. I am glad to hear that you would like to become a computer programmer. It usually requires a Computer Science degree that may need to 3-4 years to complete the course subject to the education system in your country and course structure. However, before entering the college, you can start learning programming languages first.
Below are my suggestions :
1. Pick up some simple programming languages, e.g. Python, Scratch, etc.
2. Learn the language syntax and structure. There are plenty of resources online.
3. Start doing some simple programming. When you familiar with the language, you can do some small projects, e.g. control a robotic arm, toy car, etc. You can then use the same approach to learn another programming language.
4. Find out the college review on Computer Science courses and the entry critieria
5. Work hard on your academic to meet the college entry requirement
Hope this helps! Good Luck!
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